President Donald Trump nominated Diane Gujarati, a prosecutor of Indian descent, to a federal judgeship on May 10 in an unusual move as she had been former President Barack Obama’s choice for the position. If confirmed, Diane Gujarati of New York will serve as a District Judge on the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York.
Diane Gujarati currently serves as Deputy Chief of the Criminal Division of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, where she has served as an Assistant United States Attorney for the past nineteen years. Ms. Gujarati also served as an Adjunct Professor of Clinical Law at New York University School of Law until earlier this year.
Before joining the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Gujarati practiced for three years as a litigation associate in the New York City office of Davis Polk & Wardwell. Upon graduation from law school, Ms. Gujarati served as a law clerk to Judge John M. Walker, Jr., of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Ms. Gujarati earned her B.A., summa cum laude, from Barnard College of Columbia University, where she was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa, and her J.D. from Yale Law School, where she served as an editor of both the Yale Law Journal and the Yale Journal on Regulation.
Obama nominated her for the judgeship towards the end of his term in September 2016 but she was not confirmed by the Senate requiring Trump’s renomination. Her father, Damodar Gujrarati, is an emeritus professor of economics at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, which trains army officers.
Federal New York Eastern District Court is located in the New York City borough of Brooklyn. The federal prosecutor’s office for Southern District of New York, where started in 1999, is one of the most high profile jurisdictions in the country as it includes Wall Street as well as the state’s capital Albany.
Formerly headed by Preet Bharara, the office had prosecuted several important people in finance, including Rajat Gupta, Raj Rajaratnam and Mathew Martoma for insider trading on Wall Street and also several important politicians like New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver. Gupta, one of the highest ranking Indian-American business leaders, was managing director of consulting firm McKinsey and was sentenced to two years in prison and fined millions of dollars.